A dodgy builder who conned a St Helens pensioner out of more than £100k for sub-standard construction work has been jailed for 12 months.
Hugh Patrick McGinley admitted a number of fraud offences when he appeared at Liverpool Crown Court following a prosecution by St Helens Council’s trading standards team.
The court heard McGinley targeted his victim, a pensioner from the West Park area of St Helens, after befriending him and then convincing him to undertake a large renovation project on his home.
However, the work that 39-year-old McGinley, of Romley Street, Liverpool, completed was either not completed or was of a very poor standard.
Overall the male victim paid around £105,000 for work to his home which was later valued by a construction expert to be worth no more than £25,000.
And the quality of much of the work undertaken at the semi-detached house was so poor it cost thousands of pounds to put it back into the condition it was in before McGinley and his team started the so-called renovations.
Coun Seve Gomez-Aspron, cabinet member for green, smart and sustainable borough, said: “This criminal behaviour is absolutely abhorrent, and I’m glad that our Trading Standards team’s prosecution led to a prison sentence. Let this serve as a stern warning that rogue trading will not be tolerated in our borough.
“It’s an unfortunate reminder of why people should never agree to work by anyone who knocks on their door. You should never feel pressured or intimated into purchasing a service by a trader – ask your friends or family to help research a reliable trader wherever possible, or consult our Trader Register.”
For reputable local tradesmen check out the council’s Trader Register scheme by going online to www.sthelens.gov.uk/traderregister or calling 01744 676304.